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UGS 302: Art & The Epidemic / Simons

Are books scholarly/peer reviewed?

How to evaluate books

Unfortunately, it can be tough to determine if a book is considered scholarly because no one labels them as such (unlike journals. I have no idea why).

This is not a checklist. You need to weigh these criteria when deciding.

To determine if a book is considered scholarly or refereed, ask the following:

  • Who is the author and what expertise do they have related to this topic?
    • In most cases, that means they teach in academia.
    • They may be involved in public policy in the government.
  • Who is the publisher?
    • Many publishers of scholarly material are affiliated with universities
    • Some publishers are not, but you can learn more about the publisher's purpose by investigating what else they are publishing
  • Who is the audience?
    • Is this written for experts in the field, or a general audience?
      • If something is written for an expert audience, it will include citations to research in academic journals, other scholarly books as well as data and statistics from authoritative sources.

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